Secret Sunflower field lights up Thamesmead park

Share this article

A quiet corner of Crossway Park in Thamesmead has been transformed into a blaze of colour after a field of 50,000 sunflowers was secretly planted.

The flowers were sown by our environmental services team and cover an area of 8,000 square metres, bigger than the pitch at Wembley Stadium.

Planted in May, in an area that was rough grass and weeds, the work was done undercover as a trial to see how the seeds would grow in the soil conditions.

The aim was to create an enjoyable display for people walking in the park, and most importantly provide food for birds and bees.

Dr Phil Askew, Peabody’s Director Landscape and Placemaking in Thamesmead, said: “We’ve had an extraordinary reaction from local people, hundreds have come to see the flowers, walk among them and take photos to put on social media.

“We wanted to create a real summer destination for residents and visitors, somewhere for them to pause and enjoy. The field has also boosted biodiversity in the park by attracting bees and birds and giving them the opportunity to flourish.”

The experiment has proven so popular with local people that Peabody is now talking to the community to see what else they’d like to see planted. Early suggestions include lavender, fruit trees, raspberries and … more sunflowers.